While Northern Virginia has enjoyed a return to Phase 3 of reopening since July, Washington DC has remained in Phase 2 since June. As some COVID-19 goals in The District are being met, more activities are returning – including the reopening of the Smithsonian’s most popular attraction, the National Museum of Natural History last Friday.
The National Museum of the American Indian also reopened that day, joining others that have been welcoming visitors with new safety policies in place. For many families, these and other DC area attractions offer the opportunity to enrich their children’s distance learning and to stimulate their senses after staying at home for so long.
MUSEUMS AND GALLERIES
Besides the two museums opening Friday, other Smithsonian institutions open in DC include the National Zoo, National Museum of African American History and Culture, National Portrait Gallery, American Art Museum, Renwick Gallery and Smithsonian Gardens. You’ll need to reserve a free timed-entry pass for all but the last two. You can reserve online at si.edu/visit or call (800) 514-3849 ext. 1.
If your family is looking for something new, you can check out the Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial, which opened on Sept. 18. The four-acre park dedicated to the 34th president is supposed to be dazzling at night – visit the memorial’s website for more information, including an audio tour.
Other destinations in the nation’s capital that are open include the National Gallery of Art, International Spy Museum, U.S. National Arboretum, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Glenstone Museum, and Museum of the Bible. These attractions also have safety protocols in place, including advance ticket reservations, limited hours, limited capacity and more. For details as well as a list of other museums and galleries currently open in The District, go to the Visit DC website.
The National Park Service has temporarily closed facilities at the National Mall and Washington Monument to visitors, but families can enjoy outdoor activities at other locations that have opened. While you need advance reservations to visit the Hillwood Estate, Museum and Gardens, you don’t need passes to enjoy the outdoor sculpture gardens at the National Gallery of Art or the Hirshhorn Museum.
You can find the latest COVID-19 updates these activities and other entertainment in the nation’s capital at the Visit DC website. As a major employer headquartered in the Washington DC Metro region, we eagerly await the reopening of all businesses and attractions so that our families can once again enjoy these world-class destinations.